Carolyn Hax: They moved for their spouse’s job – which he now does from home

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Dear Caroline: In 2020, my husband and I left a state I was very happy to live in so he could take on a new job. I had family nearby, a job I loved, and a huge support network. (I am in long-term recovery from addiction, with over 10 years clean and sober.)

Mainly due to the pandemic, my husband is working from home and has been to the office fewer times than I can count on his two hands. We joke that he hasn’t had to wear pants to work for two years now.

Joking aside: I’m miserable where we are, a deeply conservative state. I miss my family, my work, my friends and the purplish region in which we lived. And I really regret that we made this move as he continues to work from home.

I know we couldn’t have foreseen a paradigm shift in corporate culture. But is it reasonable of me to ask that if he doesn’t go back to the office, we go “home?” I shared my frustration with him once, but stopped short of asking him or giving him some sort of ultimatum – which I would never do.

Sullen in the South: Oh my God, just say you want to back off.

Or at least say that things haven’t improved since you expressed your frustration and that you’d like to set aside some time to discuss long-term plans.

In the meantime, if you haven’t already: live like you’ll never go back. Every policy made “here” may be contrary to your beliefs, but I will not accept that every human being living “here” is.

Also, every day we simply resign ourselves to endure is a day given up – and while it’s inevitable that some days will be like that (illness, grief, general shit, homework), it’s a kindness to ourselves. to keep those days to an absolute minimum. Find beauty. Open minds. Create. Look for other misfits, their refuges, their code words. Even if your stuff is on a moving van within the month, you’ll be better off for all the effort you’ve put in.

And last but most, congratulations on 10+ years. It is courageous, especially under the regional constraint.

Hi there: About a year ago my good friend “Annie” introduced me to her friend “Sally”. Sally and I hit it off and started spending time together.

Recently, Annie told me that Sally gave her the cold shoulder for no apparent or stated reason. Since then, I have witnessed Sally’s coldness.

During our short friendship, Sally was never mean to me or badmouthed me about Annie. Personally, I have nothing against Sally and I enjoy spending time with her.

I’m not sure what to do. I don’t think I can be neutral about Sally’s coldness, but it seems equally petty to ice her without explanation. And I’m also hesitant to confront Sally directly, because I don’t think their conflict has anything to do with me. To help?

Swiss aspirant: Feelings can change for completely defensible reasons.

We can’t be mean about it, though. Insulting, ghosting, or backstabbing to get out of expired friendships is gratuitous and cruel.

Witnesses to cruelty have a duty to speak. Backburning cookies do not.

So there’s your answer: if you see Sally being cruel, then defend Annie in the moment. (“What was it about?”) Otherwise, uncomfortably, it’s up to the two of them to work it out while you continue your friendships with the two.

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